These are composites, names and details have been changed to protect our clients’ confidentiality.
“Joey,” age 8, behaved pretty well at school, but at home he was a tyrant. If he didn’t get his way, he could tantrum for hours, exhausting his parents, who felt like they’d tried everything. Their frustration threatened their marriage as they completely disagreed about the best way to discipline Joey, and his younger sister was beginning to mimic his defiant behavior.
Joey’s CFCG therapist helped his parents to find a middle ground: actually, they were both right! A behavioral program that was both strict and kind helped to turn Joey’s behavior around at home. Play therapy to improve Joey’s self-esteem and a few months of parent coaching to help his parents change old habits helped to get this family back on course.
“Andrew” was attending a competitive school in the South Bay Area. Feeling the pressure of getting good grades, competing with his peers, and getting into a prestigious university, Andrew began to have panic attacks where he would have trouble breathing. The stress was becoming so severe he began to avoid social situations and would snap at his family at home.
Andrew worked for several months with a CFCG therapist to identify his underlying thoughts and feelings and learn new methods to cope with his anxiety and panic attacks. Andrew learned concrete Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) techniques to help him overcome his concerns, reengage with friends, tackle college applications, and ultimately attend college out of state.
Anxiety or Depression
“Kendra” had a very hard time trying anything new, or being alone at any time. She needed constant reassurance, and even then would cry and hold back when faced with any kind of challenge. She didn’t sleep well, was extremely picky about food, and complained of headaches and stomachaches for which her pediatrician couldn’t find any physical cause.
Kendra’s CFCG therapist saw her for play therapy for several months, helping her to work through her anxiety in a supportive setting, at her own pace. Her therapist also helped her parents to see how they could support her at home, and she slowly began to be braver everywhere. Kendra was sad to say good-bye to her therapist, but simply didn’t have the time to come in for appointments because she was so actively involved in new and exciting after-school activities.
“Anika’s” parents brought Anika into therapy because of her insomnia. She was waking several times per night and having difficulty returning to sleep. Anika was also complaining of stomachaches that were so severe she would ask to stay home from school several times per week. When she would attend school, she would spend most of her time in the back of her classrooms avoiding her peers and teachers and eat by herself at lunchtime.
Anika’s CFCG therapist worked closely with Anika and her parents to identify the underlying root of her symptoms: trauma. Anika had experienced several years of being bullied at school and had never told anyone due to a belief that she was weak for being bullied. Anika’s CFCG therapist helped Anika process her trauma, learn new skills to help her sleep, and think healthier and more helpful thoughts about her experience through Trauma Focused Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (TFCBT). Anika is no longer struggling with sleep or stomachaches and has started to develop new and supportive friendships.